VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana announced that although the in-person annual air show is canceled, a virtual live broadcast will still take place.
The show will happen on September 19 from noon to 4 p.m. Performances will be featured by a variety of military aircraft including the Navy’s F/A-18 Super Hornet and the Air Force’s F-22 Raptor.
This year, the show is themed “In It Together” as a way to pay tribute and honor the frontline workers during the pandemic.
“NAS Oceana is very fortunate to call the cities of Virginia Beach and Chesapeake our home, and we take pride in doing our part to keep the public safe. As members of these great communities, we know that people look forward to attending our very popular air show,” said Capt. John W. Hewitt, Commanding Officer of NAS Oceana.
The decision to broadcast the show came after the in-person air show was canceled on July 13 to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. The event has been held nearly every year since 1962 and typically attracts more than 250,000 spectators, making physical distancing impractical.
“Moving the air show to a live-streamed event allows us to keep everyone healthy, while still showcasing what the Navy and Marine Corps team is capable of doing when we deploy around the world to defend America’s interests,” Hewitt continued.
The broadcast will also show pre-recorded video features that include a tour of the Navy’s East Coast Master Jet Base, an overview of the history of Naval Aviation, and an up-close look at the Navy’s unmanned autonomous helicopter, the MQ-8B Fire Scout.
“The best way to view the air show is on your phone, tabletor computer,” Hewitt said. “We need to make sure emergency services personnel can get wherever they may need to go and that nobody is spreading the virus outside of our gates trying to get a better view of the show. We can’t wait to welcome everyone back to NAS Oceana when it is safe to do so, but you can help us speed up that process by watching from the comfort of your home.”